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Fox News Hosts In A Snit Over NPR’s Lack Of Tolerance For “Honest” Anti-Muslim Bigotry

Reported by Ellen - October 22, 2010 -

You’d have had a hard time watching Fox News Thursday (10/21/10) without seeing segment after segment of outrage from various hosts and pundits over Juan Williams’ firing from NPR. Though the mantra is that Williams was “just being honest” when he agreed with Bill O'Reilly that it's time to end political correctness and admit the magnitude of the Muslim problem - and then added that he gets nervous and worried when he gets on a plane with Muslims - it’s pretty clear that the “honesty” the Fox Newsies really care about is the ability to speak bigoted opinions frankly. How do I know? Besides the fact that Williams' comments clearly were bigoted, Fox News has a long record of denigrating and denouncing other honest views without regret - even when careers ended as a result.

Van Jones - Here's a man who offered a few honest opinions that Glenn Beck, among others, didn't like. Where was Fox News' outrage when Jones got hounded out of office? Nowhere. In fact, Fox Nation called it a "victory" when Jones resigned.

Ward Churchill - Bill O'Reilly didn't just disagree with Professor Churchill's writings, but demanded that he be fired for his views. O'Reilly's obsessive attacks on Churchill were anything but tolerant of "honest opinions."

Karl Rove - Recently, Karl Rove drew the enmity of many conservatives when he merely (correctly) opined that Christine O'Donnell is unelectable to the U.S. Senate. Fox News did not vociferously defend his right to an honest opinion the way they have with Williams.

Helen Thomas - Funny, I don't remember any outrage on Fox News when Helen Thomas was forced to retire for her honest comments about Israel and Palestine.

Jeremiah Wright - Whatever you think of his views, you can’t say that Rev. Wright wasn’t expressing his honest opinions to his congregation in that infamous "G-D America" video. Nobody was forced to listen to him that didn’t want to (except those of us who followed the 2008 presidential campaign on cable news). Of course, Fox used Wright to smear then-candidate Barack Obama. But the game was, take Wright's "honest" opinions and use them to tarnish Obama, regardless of his beliefs. Rev. Wright's life was merely collateral damage. Among other reasons, Fox News attacked him for "living large" and with "no ghetto in sight." Without offering a shred of evidence, Oliver North announced on Hannity & Colmes that Wright "is a recruiting campaign for Al Qaeda and all the enemies of America." Why? Because Wright expressed his honest opinions.

Coretta Scott King's Funeral - Is there anything more tasteless than smearing a funeral? Sean Hannity did it not once but twice because the eulogizers spoke their anti-Bush opinions. Neil Cavuto and Bill O'Reilly also made their own attacks.

Dr. Tiller - OK, abortion doctor Tiller did more than voice an opinion O'Reilly disagreed with. But he lived an honest ethic that O'Reilly relentlessly attacked even after Dr. Tiller was gunned down.

Fox News' concern about the right to speak honestly is about as genuine as its concern for fairness and balance on its airwaves - it's only vitally important for certain views, and in this case it's a rather odious view. Will Fox News be demanding the right for white supremacists to voice their honest opinions about African Americans next?

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